Reader beware: This is a LONG and detailed blog entry. Read at your own risk.
We went in for our regular 39 week appointment on Wednesday, April 6 with Dixie (one of our favorite midwives) at 11:20am. I had still been having the random contractions off and on but measured at only 1cm and 0% effaced. Brian, Dixie and I had a long discussion about our options and how I was feeling. Dixie said that "my emotional state trumped all" and if I was ready, then let's do it. So we scheduled my induction to begin that night. Brian and I were SUPER excited and of course very anxious. We were sent home and told that Northside Hospital would call us when they were ready for us to check in.
We got a phone call from Northside at 7:30pm and they told us to arrive at 9:00pm. Brian and I finished packing up our last minute items, tidied up the house, grabbed some Chick Fil A for dinner and drove to the hospital. It was hard to believe that it was actually going to happen!
We got admitted to our room A1 at 10:00pm and began filling out stacks and stacks of paperwork. I got my IV put in and let me just say this may have been one of the worst parts of the whole experience. It took 2 different nurses, 45 minutes, and 3 different "stabs" to get the IV in. Of course, I almost passed out and began to cry. Christine, another midwife that some of my fellow pregnant friends (Allie and Mandy) really like, came to our room and checked me. Still only 1 cm dilated. Christine inserted the Cervadil around 12midnight. Brian and I were left alone in our room from 12midnight to 4:00am to try and get some rest. I was hooked up to the machines that showed my contractions and Carter's heartrate. I was having contractions that were VERY random but were on average about 5 minutes apart. Some of my contractions lasted 8-9 minutes long. Please imagine. Yikes. I slept in the hospital bed (and Brian on the "sofa") from 12-1:30am and also did a lot of praying. I had to keep waking Brian up to take me potty and help me unplug from the machines. By 1:30am there was no more hope of sleeping for me (sweet Brian kept on snoozing), so I watched tv and played on my phone. At 4:30am, I was having some low back/buttock pain so the nurse gave me a shot of pain meds. At this point, I was told I only had 30 more minutes to eat "my last meal" so I sent Brian to get me a bacon, egg and cheese biscuit from McDonald's. Yum.
It is now, of course, Thursday April 7. My nurse, LaShonda (who we really liked!) came in at 6:05am to pull out my Cervadil and gave me the sad news that I had no change in dilation or effacement. Frustrating!
Every 12 hours, we got a new nurse. Goodbye LaShonda. Hello Kathy B.
The nurse put in the Pitocin drip at 7:00am and a blood pressure cuff on my arm that would automatically take my BP every 15 minutes (quite annoying). I was told no more eating and only clear liquids. If you know me, you know that no eating is a tough thing. #1 I love food. #2 I am hypoglycemic and need to eat every 3 hours.
Christine, the midwife, came back at 8:00am to check me. After being on the Pitocin for only 1 hour, I was still only 1 cm dilated but now 70% effaced. Brian and I got really excited at this point and started having some hope! Maybe my early morning prayers had worked!! Christine told me at this point no more liquids and I can only have ice chips! AHHHHH
By 8:30am, my contractions were now 1-4 minutes apart and getting more painful. At 10:00am Christine came back and gave me Fentanyl (pain med) in my IV to help me relax and then proceeded to break my water. LOTS of water. This didn't hurt as bad as I was expecting, just more pressure. My contractions started to get MUCH more intense after my water broke.
My mom arrived at 8:45am and my dad arrived at 10:15am. I was happy to see them and have their love and support. I didn't let them stay in the room for long - too much going on, but I was glad to have them close by in the waiting room.
I got checked again by Christine at 10:30am and was now 2 cm dilated and 80% effaced. WAHOO! Brian and I got even more excited. All of this stuff (waters being broken, Pitocin drip, Cervadil over night, etc) was working!!
30 minutes later, the nurse gave me another dose of Fentanyl (to calm my anxiousness) and then inserted the epidural with the help of Dr. Meredith. Not gonna lie, the epidural was a bit painful. I started to cry as I leaned over the side of the hospital bed and Brian and the nurse had to hold me down so I wouldn't jump. Brian did a WONDERFUL job of calming me down. He rubbed my shoulders and scratched my head and whispered sweet words to me. Again, I would die without him.
It only took about 15 minutes for the epidural to kick in. By 11:35am I was numb and started to fall asleep. Thank God! The contractions I was feeling and struggling through before now felt like light pressure. Thank you God for drugs like that!
I woke up from my nap at 1:30pm. Christine (midwife) and Kathy (nurse) were in the room checking on me and Carter's heart rate began to drop quickly. It dropped down to 60bpm. Brian watched as Christine and Kathy begin frantically flipping me from side to side (as I was numb and couldn't move myself) trying to get a good read on Carter's heartbeat. I was given an oxygen mask and looked over at Brian's face and he was white as a ghost. I started to cry and Brian began to cry. Thankfully, after a few scary minutes, Carter began to recover and his heartrate came back up. SUPER scary moment. Again, I am so glad Brian was in the room with me at that moment.
Kathy put in my catheter and Christine checked me again. I had reached 4cm and 90% effacement and a -1 station. WAHOO!! So even though we had that scary moment with Carter's heartrate, we were headed in the right direction.
Christine came back to the room at 4:00pm and sadly, I was STILL only 4cm and my contractions were still not "regular" enough. Once they stopped the Pitocin, I wasn't having contractions on my own. Also, Carter was "locked in place" but facing the side (ideally, he should be facing my back). What in the world? So Christine recommended I have a C-Section. Brian and I agreed and decided whatever the doctors recommend I should just go with. Of course, we had planned on a vaginal delivery, but I was having such a tough time and Carter was too, we decided a C-Section was the way to go.
30 minutes later a new anesthesiologist named Victoria (loved her) came in and gave me MULTIPLE doses in my epidural while testing me at the same time to see how numb my abdomen was getting. I think she gave me 5 extra doses. Listen, I didn't want to be able to feel a thing! The nurses came in and gave Brian some scrubs to put on over his clothes, shoes, hair and even a face mask. My parents came into the room to get all of our bags and I could tell my mom was freaked out. I couldn't even look at her because I didn't want to get more worked up and scared than I already was. My mom and dad kissed me on my forehead and left. I was wheeled up on my hospital bed to OR Room #2. Brian had to wait out in the hall while they prepped me for surgery. I hated this part because I had to be away from Brian. Christine (midwife), Dr. Jill Henke (a doctor from my OB/GYN practice), the anesthesiologist, and about 5 or 6 other nurses were in the OR with me getting me prepped. It was SO scary being hoisted from the hospital bed to the operating table. I could hear everything they were saying but I couldn't move because of the epidural. The set everything up and draped a sheet in front of my face so I couldn't see anything. Brian was allowed to enter the OR and was told to come sit by the head of the bed and not touch anything. I was freaking out and VIOLENTLY shaking all over my body uncontrollably. Brian, again, did a phenomenal job of calming me down. He didn't show any signs of fear (even though I know he was scared), kept his hand on my shoulder/head/face the entire time, and talked to me in a calm sweet voice. After 5 minutes of VERY intense pressure/pushing/proding that I could feel up in my chest and entire abdomen area, they pulled Carter out. Brian stood up and started snapping pictures of Carter. Brian started crying first, then I of course joined in. Brian wiped away my tears for me. Carter's official birth time was 5:09pm :)
While they stitched me up, the nurses were cleaning Carter. I could feel TONS of pressure as they stitched me up. Gross. They finished cleaning Carter and laid him on my chest for me to kiss him. I loved this part and hated it at the same time. I loved being able to feel him on my chest and kiss him but I hated that I couldn't move my arms and hold him close. Complete torture. The nurses then gave Carter over to Brian to hold and they snapped some pictures of my 2 men together. Brian then followed Carter and a nurse to the recovery room where they weighed, measured, and bathed him. Carter's official birth weight was 8 lbs 4 oz and his height was 21 inches :) They gave him a shot of Vitamin K and Erythromicin for his eyes. I, again, was left alone. I am not a fan of these moments. The doctors finished stitching me up and wheeled me to the recovery room to meet up with Carter and Brian.
The recovery room was total madness. We were surrounded by 6 other moms/babies/dads and separated only by a curtain from each other. So we had the pleasure of hearing all the other babies crying. That was crazy. A few nurses came in to push on my stomach (ouch) and a few other recovery things. They wheeled me in my hospital bed and Brian pushed the bassinet with Carter and we went to our room #191. I was hoisted onto my new hospital bed (where I have been for 3 days now!) and about 3 different nurses started running tests on me (vitals mostly).
It was now 7pm and Michele and Victoria (new nurses) told me I was allowed to have liquids. GLORIOUS! I noshed on ice chips and sipped on water. It was heavenly! Michele and Victoria tried to help me with breastfeeding and pushed on my stomach. Both of which were very painful. They also ran a few tests on Carter.
My parents, my sister Deborah, and Brian's mom came back to the room and took turns holding Carter for the first time. I was VERY out of it but I know that everyone fell in love instantly with Carter!
So even though our labor/delivery turned out completely different than we had hoped for, it was a beautiful story with a perfect ending. And although I am in severe pain with recovery of a C-Section and Brian and I are exhausted beyond belief, we have the most beautiful and wonderful son. We are in love with Carter and are thrilled to have him in our lives now. We have been blessed beyond belief and I know that our lives will completely change. But all for the better.
Welcome to the world Carter Matthew Hake. We love you SO incredibly much!!!